If you are a new runner, this article is for you. Most athletes have very fine legs, but controlling their breathing while they run is a difficult thing that they have not been able to deal with it effectively. This article is aimed at teaching you how to breathe while running. When you look at more experienced runners, you will notice that they seem to be able to run faster with less efforts and without any labored breathing as if they are standing at a spot. You are not alone in this. Most new runners you find today experience this same problem. If you have this problem, you don't need to feel discouraged because every accomplished runner you find today once struggled with this same problem when they began.
So how can you stay in control and get your lungs unlocked to make your breathing less labored? It will naturally take some practice and spirited efforts. Breathing is a very natural thing to do, and it feels very unnatural to dwell your thoughts on your breathing. But focusing on your breathing with few runs will enable you enjoy and relax your arms.
How to Breathe While Running: 6 Techniques Worth a Try
Make use of the talk test strategy
If you do not find it easy to time your breathing with your running strides, one simple talk test is enough to help you ascertain the intensity of your running and to check if it matches your training goals. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that if you can talk comfortably while working out, without singing, the intensity of your performance will remain moderate, which is ideal for endurance runs that take longer time.
If you find it hard to say more than just a few words without stopping to take a breath, you have a vigorous running intensity, as noted by the CDC, which supports running at greater speed for short periods or running during occasional workouts.
Take deep breaths
Your rib cage is a bit larger than your lungs. When you breathe deeply, you end up expanding your lungs, forcing the diaphragm to be pressed down, and causing the expansion of your abdomen as the lungs get filled with air. You will inhale a large amount of oxygen when you learn to adopt this breathing technique while running, which helps prevent nausea and dizziness. With some stretching and training, you will be able to boost your endurance by breathing to your full potential. Using Pilates and yoga for cross-training can equally help you master how to breathe through your diaphragm.
Try 2:1 strides per breath ratio
While no set technique is adequate for every runner, most runners prefer the 2:1 breath/side ratio, based on the 2013 review published in PLOS One. Most importantly, the writers of this review pointed out that most runners like taking about 2 running steps for every step they take while working out. However, while the 2:1 breathing method is often seen as the most ideal strategy for most successful runners, you do not have to adopt this breathing technique to become a successful runner.
Use a 3:2 ratio
This ratio is also recommended by many athletes when being asked the question of how to breathe while running. Make sure your breathing is timed with your steps. Go with 3:2 breathing ratio: take in some full breaths for 3 steps and out for about 2 steps.
This shows you will have to inhale on the left, right, and left steps while exhaling on the left and right steps. This technique will enable you concentrate more on breathing to make sure you do not breathe too quickly or in a shallow way. You will equally experience a much lower heart rate due to your ability to take in more oxygen.
Make sure your breathing matches your steps
We are not all comfortable making use of a 3:2 or 2:1 breath/stride ratio, so what counts is discovering that which works best for you. For a slow-paced run, breathe in for 3 or 4 steps, then breathe out 3 or 4 steps also. Try using your head to count the steps and fine-tune to breathing at the same intensity. The intensity of your breathing will naturally increase when you are running with higher intensity, and this is to support higher output of energy and take on a faster pace-breathing in 1-2 steps and breathing out 1-2 steps. Supposing you are not able to match the intensity of your breathing with your steps, which means you are running at a much faster rate; simply reduce your speed and fall back to your initial rhythm.
Breathe through your nose
If you find it hard to breathe in through the nose, you need to start practicing this technique before a drastic drop in temperature happens. Inhaling through your nose enables you inhale deeply and effectively, which ultimately helps you run with more ease despite the obtainable temperature at any time. If you have not mastered the act of using your nose to breathe and wish to jog in chilly temperatures, wear any bandana or a shirt you can easily pull high above your mouth and nose to trap the humidity and moisture of the air you take in before it gets to your lungs.